Ted's Shearwater - mis-measured Little?

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Subject: Ted's Shearwater - mis-measured Little?
From: "Charles Nixon" <>
Date: Thu, 11 Feb 2010 17:18:14 +1100
Many thanks to all who contributed to the discussion.
Mike Carter [not surprisingly!] zeroed in on the weakest part of my description.
I reproduce his letter below, and my apologetic response.
I was clearly in Bushwalking, not Birdwatching, mode, and my lesson has been 
I'll take a tape next time I'm walking on a beach after wild weather!

 many thanks for your kind response.
I fear that my measurements were far too careless - I simply used my hand-span!
As for my gut feeling, it's been some time since I handled a beach-washed 
specimen, so I was simply not sure at the time how my bird would measure up to 
a Flutterer [or anything else].
When I looked at the books, and converted my inches into centimetres, I was 
startled to see how large my measurements were.
I'm now pretty happy to be persuaded that it was simply an ill-measured Little 
Sorry to have been so amateurish! [Then, I am an amateur!]
Best wishes,

>>> "Mike Carter" <> 8/02/2010 5:18 pm >>>
Well Ted, you have me totally stumped. Description including bluish feet AND
white to eye but not above fits some 'Little Shearwaters'. Only thing that
doesn't fit is size. It is way too big! How did you measure it; with a rule,
callipers? Perhaps you wrote the figures down wrongly. Those dimensions make
it a big bird, larger than Fluttering Shearwater, almost the size of a Manx.
So the wingspan was just short of a metre! Thinking about it now was it
really that big? If so, then you have no choice. You must go back and
collect it! When we last met at Adele Island that would have been no problem
for you. You were fittest man in our group. Then you would have swam or ran
back to collect it without a second thought!

Mike Carter

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